• 07Mar

    2014-ford-fiestaThe Ford EcoBoost engines boast of performance and excellent fuel efficiency but the line of powerplants is bringing more into the picture. Since its introduction almost four years ago, the American brand has delivered about 530,000 vehicles with EcoBoost engines. Ford is said to invest more to meet the demand for these vehicles.

    According to recent reports, Ford will be pouring in a lot of money to prep up two factories in Ohio and even hire more employees. While the EcoBoost rides are a bit more expensive than their more conventional siblings, they have become very popular.

    The EcoBoost engines are fitted into almost everything like the upcoming Ford Fiesta, the Ford Fusion, and even the F-150 pickup truck.

    In a market ruled by V8′s, Ford’s greener pickup trucks are making heads turn. In the U.S., the company has delivered around 280,000 units of the F-150 with an turbocharged EcoBoost engine under its hood.

    Ford is actually selling the EcoBoost F-150s higher than they ever projected. The brand is actually selling more of these pick-up trucks in a month than what they thought they can get rid of in a year. The carmaker is set to offer an EcoBoost F-150 with a smaller displacement for its 2015MY.

    Ford will also tap its facilities in Cleveland to generate more jobs and also manage the demand for the F150 in the U.S. and Europe. The EcoBoost sales in Europe is expected to hit more than 480,000 come 2015.

    This also shows a clear trend in the automotive market. It is clear that these turbocharged gas engines are less efficient than the hybrid or diesel vehicles but they are more appealing to customers for their stronger performance and somehow adequate efficiency.

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  • 12Dec

    storing-solar-energyCan you imagine how you can store the energy coming from the sun so that you can use it even during night time or when the sun is not shining? A group of scientists is trying to figure out a way to make clean energy out of the solar energy. The only way possible is to store it as hydrogen.

    To do what they want to achieve, the experts need to use the basic ingredients, water and rust. The scientists purposely made use of inexpensive materials and look into scalable production potentials of solar hydrogen.

    The basic idea of converting the sun’s energy into hydrogen is not actually a new idea. In fact, scientists have been trying to figure it out for more than four decades. In the 1990s, Michael Gratzel came up with the PEC solar cell that helps produce hydrogen straight from water.

    The main problem of the latest efforts is the cost of the PEC or photoelectrochemical technology. In theory, it is very interesting but it is not really viable if you can produce a small surface that would cost $10,000. In order to avoid this scenario, the experts opted to use the cheapest materials possible. They were actually able to bring the numbers down and make the technology more viable.

    The semiconductor they used is iron oxide or what we know as rust. The rust is not really what you just see in old nails but an enhanced version that involves cobalt oxide, aluminum, and silicon oxide. The second part of the equation consists of titanium dioxide ad dye. The second layer allows the electrons from the rust to have enough energy in order to get the Hydrogen portion of the water.

    So far the study has been a success with the technology attaining an efficiency of 16%.

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  • 24Oct

    NEC develops a a prototype battery made from manganese and lithium that features cathodes that can handle a higher voltage of 4.5V. It also makes use of an electrolyte solution that helps stabilize the operation on a higher voltage. This product can help improve the range of electric vehicles in the future while making the battery packs later.
    The electrolyte solution and cathode help improve the energy density of the battery by as much as 30%. It also improves battery capacity while lowering its weight. The initial safety tests also gave favorable results . The new battery was presented by NEC during a recent scientific conference in Hawaii.

    The company currently produces lithium ion batteries that use cathodes made from manganese. These battery technologies are now used for large capacity applications such as in electric vehicles and in residential applications.

    The battery density has been a known-issue for manufacturers. NEC tried to resolve this by introducing a new electrolyte solution that slows down oxidative decomposition and also using higher voltage.

    The new batteries also make use of nickel in place of the manganese based cathode. This allows operation in higher voltages while maintaining safety during use and during recharging.

    The use of the new cathodes and anodes increase the operating voltage to 4.5 volts from the usual 3.8 volts of existing batteries. This leads to increased energy density from 150 to 200 Wh/kg or roughly a 30% improvement. This also means increased amount of energy stored. The new batteries are also lighter compared to existing units with the same storage capacity.

    The company promises to push for further development and support new researches to come up with batteries with better life span capacity, and reliability.

    Engineers have been working years to develop these kind of totally different motors and engines for both regular cars and electric cars, better motors than in second hand cars for sale. We're in the middle of a paradigm-shift in motoring, and we are so happy you guys are here on our blog checking it out with us!

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  • 26Apr

    Experts continue the search for safer and cleaner sources of energy to transition from the use of fossil fuel. Farmlands are also increasingly being devoted to the production of bioethanol. There is an issue though when it comes to using land crops for fuel as this might affect the supply of food in the long run and might increase costs.

    A team of experts at the Zoology Department of the Tel Aviv University and scientists from the Israel Oceanography Institute, and Ben Gurion University have explored the seas to find a renewable source of energy which will not endanger biodiversity, natural habitats, and food sources of human. According to them, marine macroalgae can easily be grown faster than land crops and be harvested for fuel without compromising the usage of land. Seaweeds is a great source of bioethanol which has not been explored much yet.

    The team of researchers is trying to develop methods to cultivate seaweeds and harvest them as a source of our renewable energy. The seaweeds can grow without any problems along coastlines and they can also help clean the waters of excess nutrients brought about by aquaculture or human wastes.

    Biomasses produced on land imposes problems like damage to our environment while experts sees the use of seaweeds for biofuel as a good solution to some marine problems. A lot of coastal regions like the Red Sea near Israel is suffering from pollution caused by humans.

    The scientists developed CAMUS or Combined Aquaculture Multi-Use Systems, a way to grow seaweeds and convert it to biofuel. This system takes into consideration the realities of the water environment and the activities of human in it.

    CAMUS will be tapping multiple species to make sure wastes in the marine environment can be converted to resources which will be productive like biofuel and at the same time help decrease the effects of pollution.

    Don't forget: every auto insurance agency in the US is now giving discounts to people driving safe, green cars. We can only stress you there's more advantages than just saving the planet, you're also saving your budget!

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  • 27Oct

    solid-state-li-ion-batteryA Japanese newspaper recently reported that Toyota Motor Corp. together with High Energy Accelerator Research Organization Tokyo Institute of Technology came up with a prototype of a solid state lithium-ion battery and they are looking to improve it so it can be released to the market around 2015 thru 2020.

    The battery can also be produced onto a sheet form and can carry larger amount of electricity. The added capacity can be beneficial for electric vehicles and add up to their range per charging. Using them on Evs may mean 1,000 kilometers or so per single charge compared to today’s electric cars which can travel 200 kilometers or a bit more at most.

    The lithium-ion batteries that we have at the moment are using organic liquid electrolytes which require stricter safety precautions. Using them in a large scale set up means more complicated set up and very high cost. These issues can be addressed by using solid electrolytes. The use of solid electrolytes right now is hindered by their conductive properties.

    An article by Toyota appeared on the pages of Nature relating the development of Li10GeP2S12 which is a lithium superionic conductor with new 3D structural framework. The proponents of the project reported of the highest conductivity for a solid state electrolyte in room temperature even surpassing that of the liquid electrolyte.

    There are several advantages when using a solid state lithium-ion battery. Some of these are big potential, high conductivity, stability, safety since it is non-explosive, and easier fabrication.

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  • 19Aug

    According to a press release issued by the state government of Virginia, an executive order was signed by Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell urging everyone to resort to using natural gas, alternative fuel and/or electrical vehicles. The news was deemed as bold and almost unexpected.

    The replacement of conventional vehicles with alternative fuel and/or electric vehicles will be done by the Virginia Office of Fleet Management Services whose office has been overlooking the operations of about 4,000 passenger vehicles. These 4,000 conventional vehicles are being uses by over 175 agencies and institutions across the state.

    According to the executive order, the state is adamant in pursuing cost-effective and practical options to pursue, promote, and encourage the usage of alternative-fuel and/or electric vehicles. Moreover, Governor McDonell expressed that the move to resort to unconventional vehicles will largely decrease the long-standing dependence on foreign oil.

    Relatively, the use of alternative-fuel/electric vehicles will create jobs in the Commonwealth and expand local businesses in the private sector. Lastly, this alternate fuel move will also give the Commonwealth the biggest chance to meet its goals.

    More and more cities/states are seeing the benefits and practical sense of using alternative-fuel/electric vehicles.

    Likewise, more and more car companies are participating in the assessment programs done in various cities all over the world to see how electric vehicles will par in everyday life. The use of such will also help in cleaning up the environment. It wouldn’t come as a surprise when one day, all of the public passenger vehicles will be powered with alternate fuel.

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  • 10Dec

    Consumers who want to try driving green cars should check out the per hour rental program of Hertz called Connect by Hertz. The car rental company foresees the curiosity of the driving public on plug-in vehicles and has included in their line-up the Chevrolet Volt, Nissan Leaf, Tesla Roadster, Mitsubishi i-Miev, Coda Sedan and the Smart ED.

    The plug-in vehicles can be rented starting December 15 in New York. The rental scheme of the green vehicles will soon be rolled out to San Francisco, Texas, Washington DC, and London by next year. Hertz is also studying the possibilities of extending the services to different colleges and universities in N. America and may be even in China by the last quarter of 2011.

    The process of renting a plug-in vehicle with Hertz is pretty simple but the number of green cars available is quite limited. Hertz is limiting the services to members only. Those who are interested can sign up via the website of Hertz. There is a variable fee collected for the membership. Upon payment, the members will be asked to submit some information. The rental agency will contact the member for availability of the vehicles.

    Slots are expected to fill up quickly since Hertz will only have 1,000 vehicles by the end of 2011 with only 20 cars joining the program by midyear. Book asap if you want to try these green cars.

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  • 01Dec

    If you are a US vacationer and planning to go to the Alps this year then it is going to be really easy and simple for you. You can take the benefit of the tie up between the Finland based Think Electric Car manufacturer and the eco-tourism pioneer Alpmobil. This is going to be one of the best ways to assure less of a carbon footprint on the Alps and make it a completely carbon free zone.

    Think EVThe first trial that was a pilot was run through this month and it was successful. Seeing this the first phase of this project is going to have 60 Think City Eco friendly cars. These cars will be available to the tourist for hire for Euros 45 only per day. These are going to be stationed outside tourists hotels, and resorts. This will be marketed online by Alpmobil the company so that tourists can book these cars before they arrive at the Alps.

    There are several battery charging stopovers located all over the city so as to make it convenient for the tourists to go on to recharge them. This is an extremely fun and affordable way to travel around the Alps and at the same time ensures that you are able to use renewable electric source which is powered by hydroelectricity. If you are concerned about the planet then you will love this most unique and innovative of ways to travel around. This car, rightly called the City can travel as fast as up to 70 miles per hour. Once you have recharged it you will be able to travel 100 miles before you need to recharge it once more.

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  • 12Jun

    Renault Master VanThere is a pressing need to produce green vans, that is vans that are environmentally friendly, and there is currently a lot of work being done in this field. There are a number of competing technologies and right now nobody knows which is likely to be successful. However it is almost certainty that in the future we will be driving vans that are far better for the environment than are currently available.

    The most likely environmentally friendly van of the future is one that runs on a mixture of ethanol and petroleum. The goal is to have vehicles that run on a half and half mixture. Since ethanol doesn’t produce the same emissions as petroleum it will reduce the amount of carbon released into the environment. The biggest problem with this approach is getting enough ethanol. Ethanol is a biofuel and is produced from crops like corn. Given that we currently have trouble feeding all of the worlds people using food to fuel cars is not really a good solution. Especially given the massive amounts of ethanol that would be needed. In order to run every car on a mixture of half ethanol would require more crops than we currently produce in total. Ethanol is a short term way to reduce pollution but it isn’t really a long term solution, so when you’re considering a Van Lease, it’s not the best option!

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  • 07Jun

    The Canadian government is allotting around C$5 million for a project that will study the large scale production of fuels from algae that grows in its province of Nova Scotia.

    The Minister for Science and Technology announced the funding during the launch of the project held at the Institute for Marine Biosciences of the National Research Council.

    Other organizations and industrial partners are also pouring financial support amounting to about C$1.2M plus some help in kind.

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